The only thing we love more than innovation in our community, is when the community works together to create even bigger and better innovations that benefit everyone! Collaboration in nonprofits can help organizations to have a wider impact, while also growing themselves. Check out the following tips on how your nonprofit can work to form an effective collaboration.
Embrace a Positive Mindset
Each organization has its strengths. Be sure to see all that your collaborator(s) can bring to the table to aid in the flow of innovation and creativity. Do not focus on negatives or what your partner(s) may lack. Positivity can energize a collaboration and lead to success.
Define Success and Articulate Goals
With multiple groups working together, it is easy for things to get lost in translation, or for individual organizations to be working towards their own agendas. It is important that all collaborators work together to define success and articulate goals for the partnership. With everyone on the same page, operations should be smoother and goals will be more likely to be attained.
It can be hard to trust another organization with some of the operational tasks usually handled in-house. However, this trust is necessary for successful collaborations. To work on building this trust and relinquishing some control, it is important that partners are honest with each other during all parts of the collaborative journey.
Mistakes will happen. Instead of being ashamed of them, organizations involved in a collaboration should discuss and learn from mistakes so they can be successful the next time. It is also tempting to play it safe after a mistake is made. However, if the collaboration is supportive, this could be the best time to take a risk. Remember, innovation is born out of failure.
Trying to avoid conflict at all costs will just result in a larger conflict later on. It is important for collaborative organizations to accept that conflict is part of the process. Once you do this, it is easier to discuss what needs to be done to move forward and limit future conflicts. Always keep the end goal in mind.
These tips will help your nonprofit to be a better partner to others while having a wider reach within the community. For more nonprofit tips, visit www.NWISOI.org.